Focus is on the Wildcats

Steve Spurrier and the Gamecocks are focused on this week's opponent rather than looking ahead. Coach Spurrier knows that if the coaches aren't ready, then his players won't be.

There's a big game looming on October 6 that will likely have major ramifications on who will decide the SEC East division winner.

However, if you listen to Steve Spurrier, you'll know that this weekend's game is where the Gamecocks focus needs to be.

Spurrier knows the history between the Gamecocks and the Kentucky Wildcats have been close in the past several matchups.

He's right.

Seven out of 10 matchups between the Gamecocks and the Wildcats have been decided by seven points or less. Last year's contest, a 54-3 win for the Gamecocks, was the only game where the Gamecocks have gotten ahead of Kentucky, and stayed ahead, since Steve Spurrier's arrival in Columbia, South Carolina.

"They are a team that is very capable. I think we are better than them, but if we don't play better than them, they can certainly beat us. The team that usually plays the best wins the game."

South Carolina was Kentucky's last win over a ranked opponent and that happened in 2010 in Commonwealth Stadium. It was also the Wildcats' first victory over a Steve Spurrier-led team. The Wildcats made a second-half comeback against the Gamecocks and held out to the final seconds as Anthony Mosley picked off a pass in the endzone with four seconds left.

Spurrier said that his coaching staff didn't coach particularly well on offense and defense in that game. The coaching staff knows that the 2010 game is history just like the 2011 game is history. This is a different team if you listen to Coach Spurrier.

"This is a different team. Every team's different, every year's different. This is two years ago. We're talking about a game that we had under control. But that game's history, just as our game with them last year's history, and the team that plays the best this week has the best chance of being the winner."

While the Gamecocks work to forget a tough loss from two years back, this year's first road game didn't go as the Gamecocks had planned. South Carolina narrowly escaped Nashville with a 17-13 win over the Vanderbilt Commodores. The Gamecocks made a few mistakes in that game as they did to start last week's win over Missouri. The hope is that the Gamecocks will work to correct those mistakes and play better.

"It's a huge game for us being a division game and hopefully we can go up there and play without some of the errors we had last week. Sometimes, you hopefully learn by your mistakes."

Steve Spurrier likes to follow something he picked up from his former coach at Florida, Ray Graves.

"If they coaches are ready to play, the players will be ready to play."

You can bet that the focus for the Gamecocks will be there this week.

Gamecock Anthem Top Stories